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ENG 200 Quiz Review


The easiest way to know you have scholarly, peer-reviewed sources in your search results list is to check the "Peer Reviewed" box.  

  • These articles have been written and reviewed by experts in the field, such as individuals holding advanced degrees or academic and government appointments in the field.  

Scholarly journals are ranked according to something called Impact Factor.  When looking at our e-journals in BrowZine, you can have the journals appear according to their ranking by clicking on "Journal Rank." 

  • You need to look for web pages that have been recently and/or regularly updated.  

  • Practice the concept of "lateral reading," especially when it concerns "breaking news," which could only be found through a recently updated website. 
  • Credible web pages often include suffixes in their web addresses such as .edu, .org, .gov, or .mil, but you still need to evaluate them.

For example:  

Imagine you are researching the number of deaths due to Covid-19, and you need to find a visual.  You turn to Google...


Whether it is a library source or a reputable web site, look for how frequently the resource is updated if your question relates to something recent or currently in the news.


A Better Option:

  • Not all research questions can be answered through journal articles or through online sources.  
  • When your topic is a complex one with many historical factors that need to be considered before you can draw conclusions, books may be your best option.  

For instance:  

Why did the murder of Archduke Ferdinand become the trigger that led to WWI?

While journal articles could be helpful, the complexity of the topic means books will have the ability to delve deeper into the subject.   

Accurately assessing the relevancy of an author's or speaker's credentials in relation to your question is what will inspire confidence in your own audience that what you are saying is reasonable and plausible.

New topic of research:  How were the ancient monuments of the world constructed?


You've found three books from the library.



But your instructor has told you that you need one more source, and it just needs to be credible, not necessarily peer-reviewed.  You decide to use information from one of your favorite TV shows, Ancient Aliens.  


Source #4:  Ancient Aliens, hosted by Giorgio Tsoukalos with frequent appearances by George Noory.


Let's look at credentials:  

Dr. Marc Aronson  
Writer, editor, publisher, speaker, and historian. He has written history and biography nonfiction books for children and young adults, as well as nonfiction books for adults about teenage readers. School of Library and Information Science faculty at Rutgers University-New Brunswick.

Ph.D. in American History from New York University

Dr. Gwendolyn Leick  
Anthropologist and Assyriologist. She is the author of various publications on the Ancient Near East. She also acts as a cultural tour guide in the Middle East, lecturing on history, archaeology and anthropology.

D.Phil. at Karl Franzens University

Dr. John M. Camp  
Director of the Athenian Agora Excavations at the American School of Classical Studies at Athens and the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Professor of Classics at Randolph-Macon College.

B.A. from Harvard University -M.A. and Ph.D. in Classical Archaeology from Princeton University

Giorgio A. Tsoukalos  
Writer, ufologist, television presenter and producer. He is best known for his appearances on the television series Ancient Aliens. Co-founder and publisher of former Legendary Times magazine.

B.A. in Communications from Ithica College

George Noory  
Host of the late-night radio talk show Coast to Coast AM. Has also appeared in the History Channel series Ancient Aliens and in Beyond Belief.

B.A. in Communications from University of Detroit



While they may be entertaining to watch, you do not want to cite Tsoukalos or Noory in your scholarly work.  Their credentials show they are NOT experts in the construction of ancient monuments.  

Why would they - or anyone - pretend to know more than they do?

Scientific theories are unassailable because they have been proven with countless duplications and have never been disproven.  Scientific hypotheses are new ideas still being actively debated.  A group or an individual may have an interest (financial or otherwise) in portraying a hypothesis as a theory (or maybe even vice versa).  When you encounter a claim that overturns conventional wisdom, it is rarely a genius who is offering a new insight but rather a self-interested party seeking to gain something by confusing an issue.

  • If the experiment supporting the claim has not been duplicated, then the claim is still in question.  It is a hypothesis and should not be accepted as proven.  
  • Claims sponsored by groups with significant investments in overturning long-held beliefs or conclusions are potentially false or biased and likewise should not be accepted as proven.  

In other words, opinions of celebrities AND/OR research sponsored by those with an economic stake in the outcome of the research should not be considered credible.